Drink this: Bootstrap Brewing Co.’s Wreak Havoc Imperial Red Ale

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Michael J. Casey

There isn’t a beer style out there that Boulder County brewers can’t handle. But, if we had to pick one where they truly excel — Boulder County’s secret weapon — imperial red ales would be it: Big, rich, hop bombs that are as snappy and piney as a Rocky Mountain forest. And if you haven’t had Bootstrap Brewing’s Wreak Havoc Imperial Red Ale, amend that. Pouring a deep mahogany red with a thick, tight head of eggshell-hued foam, Wreak Havoc laces the glass like cathedral windows, smells like fresh spruce sap, delivers a load of rich malt in the mouth, and blasts of lemony hop bitterness to clean it up. It drinks way easier than an 8.5% ABV beer with 88 international bittering units ought to, and reminds you with every sip that the mountains are closer than you think.